I read an article in the news recently which showed the statistics for marriage had increased in 2010, after a continuing decrease in weddings held in the UK since 1972. I can understand why marriages started to reduce in the early 1970′s – I’m making a guess that the wider availability of the contraceptive Pill has had a lot to do with that, helping to create a society where it was no longer required to get married because of a suprise baby on the way. Obviously it’s now totally socially acceptable to live together without being married, so the decrease in marriages throughout the Eighties to today can be attributed to that - but I don’t know why that social norm was created. (I should have paid more attention in Sociology A Level, I think). But a question that rises to my mind is, did the reduction in marriages mean that we were less romantic as a nation? I really h0pe not.
Weddings are wonderful things. As a wedding photographer, obviously I get to see a lot of them. It’s always beautiful to be privy to the happiness of the couple and their families, and see the anticipation of the start of the next chapter of their life together. Many of the couples whose weddings I photograph have been together for many years. I don’t ask why it’s only now they have decided to marry – it could be any number of reasons, including finances, stability, children, or other reasons I couldn’t and wouldn’t guess at. But I do know one thing – every wedding I attend, it’s always a hugely important event to the couple, a massive deal to them which is never taken lightly. There is always romance aplenty, to go with this monumental life step. And there’s always the sense that the couple share a wonderful past which this is just a matter of building upon and consolidating.
I’m married myself, and in this respect, I’m a little bit of a traditionalist; I wanted to be married before having children, and I wanted to give any children the most stable and loving start I could provide. I don’t believe that you need to be married to give children the best start, though; it was just a personal choice which was right for me. On a smaller level, there’s something lovely about saying ‘my husband’ that ‘my partner’ or ‘my boyfriend’, for me, just doesn’t compare to. It’s almost impossible to explain, but it’s something very special that summarises the commitment you’ve bound yourself so willingly to.
I’m really glad that marriage is on the rise again. I believe that, now we are released from the conventions of the past, where you ‘had’ to be married to live together or have children, society is finding its own level again. We didn’t have to be married, so we weren’t; like teenagers, as society we’re now outgrowing that phase, and we’ll now get married not because we have to, but because we have the freedom to. For me, it makes the act of marriage even more special.
So what say you? If you’re married, or if you’re not, we all have our personal reasons for being so. But why do you think that marriage in general is on the rise again? One thing I do know; I’m looking forward to documenting even more of these beautiful events in the future!
Thank you thank you thank you!!
The pictures are amazing!! What a lovely present to come home from honeymoon to!
Both of us are very pleased with them, they are just fabulous. What a very talented lady you are!
Gilly & Chris